When Paul came over the sea | DocFilm | DW | 04.10.2018
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When Paul came over the sea

Paul Nkamani has made his way from Cameroon to Berlin. Berlin Filmmaker Jakob Preuss was able to accompany the migrant on his grim and dangerous journey to Europe. Their unusual friendship transcends emotional borders in a testing environment.

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Paul, a migrant from Cameroon, had made his way through the Sahara to the Moroccan coast, where he was waiting for a chance to cross over to Europe by boat. In the woods near Nador, Paul met filmmaker Jakob Preuss, who was making a research trip along Europe's external borders. Paul managed to reach Spain in a dinghy but half of his fellow travelers lost their lives in the two-day crossing. And instead of receiving trauma counseling, Paul was incarcerated in a detention center. After his release, he met Jakob again in the Spanish city of Granada. Because of the economic crisis in southern Europe, Paul wanted to travel on to Germany, the former colonial power in Cameroon and the land of his dreams. Jacob had to decide whether to help Paul in his quest for a better life or remain just a passive filmmaker. In the end, the story took a turn that neither man could have imagined when they first met in the forest in Morocco.